Previously Unreleased Tracks
15. This Is It (3:36)
16. This Is It (Orchestra Version) (4:55)
1. She's Out Of My Life (Demo) (3:19)
2. Wanna Be Startin' Somethin' (Demo) (5:43)
3. Beat It (Demo) (2:03)
4. Planet Earth (Poem) (3:15)
Original Release Date: October 26, 2009
An important thing to remember when considering the soundtrack to This Is It: this entire film and CD project was never supposed to happen.
This Is It was designed as a comeback tour, not a movie, with the rehearsals taped not for exhibition, but rather instruction, possibly some video bonus down the line. Of course, Michael Jackson's tragic passing created considerable demand for those final rehearsals (no need to get into the financial need, as well), so they were packaged as the This Is It film, released almost five months after his death, with a soundtrack as an accompaniment.
Since there were no real live recordings made, at least not any to fill a big-budget blockbuster like this, the soundtrack consists of almost nothing but the hits repackaged one more time, with the title track an '80s leftover, co-written by Paul Anka and released under the name "I Never Heard" by Safire added as an enticement in two separate versions, the second being orchestral with an opening straight out of Sgt. Pepper's. "This Is It" is featured in the film's closing sequence and includes backing vocals by Michael's brothers, the Jacksons.
There's a second disc containing demos of "She's Out of My Life" (just Michael and an acoustic) "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'" (full demo, with identical rhythm and guitar lines, close to the final version but lacking its horns and more tribals feelings), and "Beat It" (a true writer's sketch, all vocals and harmonies, no lyrics or instruments, kind of awesome) plus a "poem" of "Planet Earth."
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